Why I Believe Adam and Eve Fell Within 45 Minutes (Warning: PG-13)

Warning: this post may not be suitable for younger audiences.

I have often heard it said that Adam and Eve had perfect fellowship with God for a long period of time before the fall. Some say years. Some even say that it could have been hundreds of years. Some say that they walked with God in the cool of the garden for an unknowable amount of time and were, because of this, the most educated and perfect beings the planet has ever known.

Nope. Can’t be. I say that the fall happened within 45min of creation.

That is right. I believe that the fall occurred 45 minutes after the creation of Eve. At the very most, I will give it a month—but that is pushing it.

First, a few things to make clear. 1) This is a part of the “fringe” series (look at the category placement). This is devoted to those questions that we don’t really have answers for. Most of the time, they are pure speculation. Most importantly, they don’t in any way contribute to essential (or even important) doctrine. No reason to split your church over this one. We are just having some fun. 2) I am assuming that Adam and Eve were real people specially created by God, not mythological accommodations. If you don’t agree, then this “fringe” post will be an even greater waste of time than it already is!

Okay, why do I believe that the fall happened so quickly? Children, cover your ears . . . sex.

Let me back up. It is hard to tell how long it was after God made Adam that he made Eve. Of course if you are a literal seven-day-creation advocate, you don’t have a problem giving an answer. It was the same day (Gen. 1:26-27). If you are a day-ager, then the sixth “day” on which Adam and Eve were created could have been a very long time. You know, that animal naming thing. Lots of animals. Lots of names (Gen. 2:19-20). Lots of time needed. However, I think that the animal naming exercise was rhetorical rather than expedient. In other words, I don’t think Adam named every species there is. He just named a lot. The exercise was to instigate in Adam a realization that he lacked something—he lacked a “helper.” It was not because God needed him to name every single species (even though there is a lesson there as well, but I won’t go there). Therefore, I think he could have finished in a couple of hours.  All of this to say that I believe that God created Adam and Eve on the same day. (Even though this is not essential to my 45min proposal.)

Now for the next step to my the-fall-happened-in-forty-five-minutes-no-longer-than-a-month-theory. Adam and Eve were perfect. They were without sin upon creation. If God gave them a command, they would obey. Adam has just named all the animals. He is thinking to himself This stinks. There is no one who I can have fellowship with and love. At least not in the way that fulfills this lack within me. God’s purpose is done. The itch has been created. Adam knows he needs someone, but he is not sure what. There is not even the concept of a “woman” in Adam’s mind.

Adam goes to sleep.

God does minor out-patient surgery, removing a rib.

God creates the woman.

Adam wakes up.

Adam sees the woman.

The woman is naked.

Adam has feelings he has never felt before (at least in the last twelve hours or so).

Adam sings a song that no one in the history of the world (not even Johnny Cash) has sought to remake.

The chorus of the song is “She is perfect.”

God gives one command: “Have sex.” Ahem…”Be fruitful and multiply . . .” (Gen. 1:28).

Adam thinks: “Have sex.”

Eve thinks “Be fruitful.”

At this point, we have a few options:

1. They said, “Nah…thanks but no thanks.”

But they were perfect. This would have been the sin of disobedience that led to the fall, not the eating of the fruit.

2. They said, “Maybe in a year or so…”

But Eve was naked. I could conceive of Eve saying “not tonight . . . this year, maybe next. But what excuse would she have had? No fall = no headaches. Plus, you have that command issue. When does procrastinating a direct command of God become sin?

3. They—and I mean that day—have sex and become “one flesh” or one family in attempt to multiply.

I go with number three. However, I have an issue. I don’t know what the female baby-making clock was like before the fall, but I imagine that the cycles were much like they are now, only perfect. I don’t think there would have been any problem on Adam’s end or Eve’s end in making a baby. Therefore, conception would have happened very quickly. Sometime that month at the latest. But my real issue is that there could not have been conception before the fall. Otherwise, we would have a race of beings that were born outside of the Adamic sin. You see, we are all called children of Adam (Rom. 5) and therefore children of the fall. The entire human race, every man and every woman are from fallen ancestors. Adam and Eve did not have any children outside of sin. Therefore, the conception of the first child came after they ate the apple.

So, here is my scenario:

God creates Eve. (7:59am)

God commands Adam and Eve to multiply. (8:00am)

They concede to this command, but don’t act yet on it. (8:01am)

They tour the Garden getting to know each other a bit. (8:02-8:40am)

Adam gets anxious. (7:59-8:40am)

Eve plays coy. (7:58-8:40am)

Adam shows her the tree of knowledge of good and evil. (8:41am)

Satan tempts Eve. (8:42am)

Adam does nothing (maybe he has something else on his mind?). (8:42am)

Eve eats the fruit. (8:43am)

Adam eats the fruit. (8:44am)

The fall is complete 45 minutes after the creation of Eve.

Adam and Eve finally have sex for the first time (9:02-9:04am) 

While I have had some fun with this post and while most of it is very speculative, I do believe that the fall happened very quickly due to the command to multiply and the reality that there was no one conceived outside of sin. At the most, I would give it a month so that the time for Eve to conceive would cover the cycle.

What do you think?

81 Responses to “Why I Believe Adam and Eve Fell Within 45 Minutes (Warning: PG-13)”

  1. Scott, I read ebbs book right when it came out. Actually asked him to be a guest blogger here. He said that he was too radioactive! Also I am a regular at biologos.

  2. Susan,

    I know what you mean. I taught through Genesis 1-2 and got the question, “Do you think Adam and Eve went to the bathroom?” I thought to myself, These people have no idea the powerful theology and ethics that these passages teach. It has the ability to transform their entire thinking about God, themselves, and their mission in the world; and yet, they want to know if Adam and Eve went to the bathroom instead. Unbelievable!

  3. Thanks, CMP.

    After finishing Enns’ book, I’ll put up a review on my blog this week. Might shoot you a link if you have time.

  4. You’re right, Eve couldn’t have gotten pregnant before the fall — otherwise she could have tried to just blame the whole fruit-eating incident on an unexplained craving…

  5. Hodge, makes you wonder about the tares sometimes, huh?
    So many distractions from the gospel, and the proclamation of it.

  6. Thankfully the tares don’t win. :)

  7. I agree that Adam and Eve’s first conception took place after the Fall, but that does not demand that their first coitus occurred after the Fall.

    At 2:24, where the narrator says, “…and they will become one flesh,” suggests that Adam and Eve experienced a physical union before the Fall.

    Furthermore, the “perfect” ability to conceive does not require automatic conception. Perfect must also be natural, in this case, a cycle. That is, there is a natural period when conception is not possible.

    BUT, if a woman’s egg passes because it went unfertilized, is that attributable to the curse?

  8. Michael, while I realise you are inserting some humour here, I read it as a potentially legitimate question.

    Of course this has been thought about by others.

    I think it raises some ideas about the nature of inheritance of sin, as well as the issue of nakedness and attraction. You are right about the former, though your thinking on the latter I think reflects post-Fall inferences.

    Briefly, it makes sense to have the women created at the beginning of her cycle, then the follicle develops then releases the egg; making her fertile about 12-14 days post creation, and conception possible then. Although conception was post-Fall, sex was pre-Fall.

    In terms of attraction, both were naked (and by implication all people would have been had the Fall not occurred) and they were not aware of it. Thus, the mere presence of nudity is unlikely to cause sexual attraction.

    James Usher proposed the Fall occurred on day 10 (based on the day of atonement). This would have made Adam and Eve 4 days old.

  9. They did not know they were naked until they ate the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil.

  10. I know the Western world in these Last Days has sex on the brain, being inundated by the Hefnerites via media.

    But turning to the text itself, the tree was the knowledge of good and evil.

    Sex just doesn’t fill that profound and awesome category, as interesting as it might be to teenagers.

    Even if the story were allegory (and the sex interpretation IS an allegorical interpretation itself, so think on that!), we would have to ask, what did the author intend by describing the sinful acts as an appropriation of the knowledge of good and evil?

    We know from experience of the world, that the scope of evil is far beyond mere sex, even though that can be a major category of man-made evil, through the Law (i.e., fornication, adultery, jealousy, murder etc.)

    The only support for a sexual interpretation of the story (and this then would have to be an allegory, demanded by the obvious euphemism as it stands) is the bit about knowing they were naked at the end.

    But that just appears to be a side-effect, presented as evidence that Adam and Eve did indeed have knowledge of good and evil, and so must have taken the forbidden fruit.

    But if we are going to have an allegorical interpretation anyway (and you can’t avoid this if you interpret the story sexually) we might as well opt for a *Biblical* allegorical interpretation using *Biblical* symbology, not modern (post Freudian) sexual symbology.


  11. I seem to be hearing a theme of very gnostic comments about sex. The idea that Adam (and Eve!) would have sex on the mind, for many of you, smacks of the fallen nature, cultural compromises, and downright evil.

    I think you need to be careful as they might have very well had sex on their mind MORE than we do, just in a pure sense. Sex is not evil. Sex on the mind is not evil. To think that this was on both of their minds when they were first brought together by God is not evil. Perversions of sex are what are evil. Remember, God is the inventor of sex. He is the very reason we like it!

  12. Peter, you obviously belong in the New Testament ;-)

  13. Actually assuming that the pre-fallen man had sex on his mind just like how we do and will react like how we do, when the Bible says nothing about it, seems gnostic.

    Again i will say that you are asking the wrong questions of the text. This kind of speculation is more of a modernistic/enlightenment way of looking at scripture. We should be reading it as more of a theological document. The whole story of the fall is to show that sin came into the world and that it will not be God’s final plan for the world.

  14. Lucian #60

    “They did not know they were naked until they ate the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil.”

    This is an important point. While sex is not evil, it is not what brings two people to become as one. It’s an important part of the glue, but it’s not the whole shebang. And this is not the meaning of becoming one in the NT.

    We don’t have the whole picture of what happened back then. We don’t know all the words that were exchanged. So we need to be careful of how far our assumptions and ponderings take us. IMO its really impossible to tell if they had sex before the fall.

  15. @Scott Castro

    You say,

    “1) Satan did not *become* the serpent but rather used the serpent for his purposes and this happened not after our fall but rather after the angelic fall.”

    I agree that the Bible doesn’t say that Satan became the serpent, but neither does it say anywhere that he used the serpent for his purposes. Nor does the Bible anywhere describe an “angelic fall”.

    Please stop guessing and read the Bible.

  16. Lots of fun here. Reclaiming the mind isn’t all serious business, though I agree important issues may come out of it.

    Well, since Eve didn’t come with a manual, it may have taken some time to figure out what was going on. Let’s raise it to 65 minutes.

    Also, for people who are naturally naked, nakedness isn’t as closely associated with intercourse. In most primitive cultures nudity is more casual, and even among us nudists can easily become accustomed to the condition. Ironically, clothing enhances the erotic effect. It seems that as people gather into towns (civilization) clothing becomes more desirable.

  17. Perfect Eve, in her 45 minutes of life decided to give in to a speaking serpent while Adam was lost in the thought of creating someone new to name, its all possible. sort of.. no comment, I will probably think about this for some time. Thanks Mike.

  18. Do any of you believe in “serpent seed”? Heh heh heh…

    There was also a group in Russia called the Skoptsy who believed that the serpent and the forbidden fruits were, ahem, metaphors for the sexual organs. They believed that sex WAS the fall and therefore the only way to purify oneself was to “strike off the serpent”; i. e., self-castration.

    So many different interpretations, and some of them quite disturbing.

  19. According to The Book of Jubilees they were in the Garden for 7 years, 2 months and 17 days, at which time the serpent participated in their fall and expulsion.

    By the way, I wonder why they felt ashamed of being naked after they ate from the tree, but not before? If God created them naked why would nudity all of a sudden be shame worthy? Their nature was, after all, derived from God who, is the final moral arbiter of the universe. Morality emanates from God so why would they feel bad about it?

  20. You are to be commended for the creative, thoughtful as well as humorous (albeit subtly ribald) presentation of your “the-fall-happened-in-forty-five-minutes-no-longer-than-a-month-theory”.

    Since this is speculation, I entertain and propose an alternative, one which allows lots of time (contra your ‘quickie’ view) for a more glorious and wholesome development of a robust sexuality between Adam & Eve (A&E) in the first marriage.

    First, my theory is based upon a modified-Traducian ontology, which considers Adam to be the initial ‘fountain of life’ (consciousness) for the “created in Our image” human race (Genesis 1:26-27; 2:7).

    This life is passed and flows in some congenital fashion to all offspring (Genesis 5:3; Romans 5), but the precise mechanics remain a deep mystery.

    A&E may have spent days, months, even years in romantic bliss, experiencing the intoxicating exhilaration of flirtation-to-arousal-to-erotic passion-to-consummative orgasm—the Trinity’s grand design which they pronounced was “very good” (Gen 1:31).

    Little-to-nothing is known regarding Eve’s fertility and ovulation, either pre or post Fall. Today’s cycle could or could not have been normative back then.

    Nevertheless, there may be an undeterminable gap in the historical narrative between Genesis 2:25 and Genesis 3:1. If so, children may have been born prior to the Fall. You claim “…the conception of the first child came after they ate the apple.” Not necessarily so. Since we believe the entire cosmos fell when A&E sinned, what would prevent A&E’s then living offspring to be included?

    When God held the formal trial for A&E’s disobedience (Genesis 3:9-19), is it possible the extended family (now sinners) all had a seat in the courtroom?

    Disclosure: I hold to a modified Six-Day Creationism in which 4D “spacetime” was stretched into existence (Einstein), just as numerous Scripture state. See

  21. i think theres a possibility that adam and eve were children when they were first created (?) . Maybe all the animals were babies too…
    a perfect world without sin, full of cuddly baby animals and adam and eve were perfect genius children…

    after sin, the world turned to sh* and Adam grew up to become a dirty old man…sounds cynical but maybe that’s how it all went down.

  22. It seems that Adam and Eve explored outside of their approved union. Genesis says there are other trees (a.k.a people) in the Garden. It seems to me that Eve had relations with someone that tempted her – and then encouraged Adam to do the same – this was their folly – that they ate of the forbidden fruit (lust) outside of their approved union (a union of love created by God) – then they felt ashamed.

  23. Great blog, and interesting topic! The one thing I would add is that the emphasis on sex seemed to be a lot different back then. You’ll notice that in Gen 5 the men there aren’t having their first sons until about 100 years old (Seth, for example had his first son at 105). It’s hard to imagine that they all had only daughters for 80 years or so, and I doubt they were practicing any kind of birth control. So these men, with bodies much closer to perfection than ours, we’re waiting a long time to have sex. So it could be possible that Adam and Eve spent their first days (or weeks?) getting to know one another on a spiritual and mental level, rather than a physical level. I know, it sounds lame, but the truth is that they didn’t even know they were naked. Maybe that paradise was more like heaven (where there is no procreation) and so that fleshly part took a back seat. With all those things in mind, it’s not unreasonable to think that they went on for a time without sex.

  24. This was great.

    God should have created my wife and I first.

    7:59 create me
    8:00 create her
    8:01 giving of command
    8:01 fulfillment of command … no fall of mankind!

  25. Lee Guernsey Sr. October 12, 2014 at 11:49 am

    I do believe the fall of man came quickly. This is based on a few reasons. One is because of children and the womans cycle for child conception the other is the Jewish calendar God gave the Jews. Their new year starts in September as the date is always in accordance with their God given calander and not ours. Next comes October the month of Holloween, bobbing for apples,the harvest time when fruit will die on the tree if not picked, leaves FALL off the trees,and our earth takes an elipitical ,not perfect, orbit into a different season that would not allow fruit to grow on the vine year round. With this said my belief is Adam and Eve were born in Sept. and sinned one month latter in Oct.,also known as heart attack month.

  26. I do believe the fall of man came quickly. This is based on a few reasons. One is because of children and the womans cycle for child conception the other is the Jewish calendar God gave the Jews. Their new year starts in September as the date is always in accordance with their God given calander and not ours. Next comes October the month of Holloween, bobbing for apples,the harvest time when fruit will die on the tree if not picked, leaves FALL off the trees,and our earth takes an elipitical ,not perfect, orbit into a different season that would not allow fruit to grow on the vine year round. With this said Adam and Eve were born in Sept. and sinned one month latter in Oct.,also known as heart attack month.

  27. Can’t be. At the end of the 6th day, God calls everything VERY GOOD. I could go with the month theory. Perhaps Eve knew when she should be certain of a pregnancy, and when she was certain that she was not, she went in search of knowledge?
    So, I’d put the fall within the first month, if not 14-15 days.

  28. If you have just committed sin against the God whom you walk around the garden with, will you have the appetite to have sex? Hmmm…not likely, right, especially just after having your mind “opened”! Truly unlikely…but I thanks for playing out the scenes =)


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